The most Popular Posts of the past seven days.

Jul 16, 2019

Strange: MBOE Has Already Failed

     In the aftermath of the Todd Road incident in Montgomery in 1983, resident formed a group to ease racial tensions. They called it "One Montgomery" and it still exists.

     In fact I attended their monthly meeting this morning, invited by Jeannie Graetz, who with her husband Rev. Robert Graetz were instrumental in forming the group. This morning's speaker was outgoing mayor Todd Strange.

 Strange is not running for re-election, but a handful of others are running to replace him, all but one of them African-American.

      Strange told the group they should insist those candidates run on a platform of what they will do for Montgomery, as opposed to a platform based on their allegation that Strange has failed.
     Speaking of failure, Strange said the newly elected Montgomery County School Board has already failed city residents by not supporting charter schools as a part of a solution to the system's  problems. In fact, he encouraged the group to support a measure that would change the Montgomery board from elected to appointed.

Jul 15, 2019

Two weeks remaining in Stonehenge photo exhibit

The "9" photo exhibit is up for two more weeks at the Stonehenge Gallery in Montgomery....till July 31st......HERE is the info.

The night of the opening reception.   

Many of those who entered the photo competition are on display.
And each of the "9" members had one photo in the exhibit. 
All are for sale, by the way.

Here's mine, still available as of yesterday....."No angels were harmed..."

Artist and gallery Assistant Director Madison Faile was there,

"Business development teams from Huntsville, Mobile, Auburn, the Wiregrass area, Tuscaloosa, and Birmingham/Jefferson County are also present at the air show." (from made in )

     I know we've asked this question before, but why is Montgomery not included in the Paris Air Show business development meetings?


 Montgomery was, after all, the site of the first Wright Brothers Flying School...


...and is about to be home to a squadron of F35 fighter jets at the only Air Force Base in the state.

And it's the damned capital city!
Was there not a seat on your plane for the Capital City, Governor?

The Moon Landing at 50

The Moon, photo by Tim Lennox

    Neil Armstrong avoided as much of the publicity as possible when he became the first -person to walk on the Moon.....but he eventually agreed to a 60-Minutes interview that aired in 2005. All three of the people in the interview..Armstrong, Ed Bradley, and Walter Cronkite, are gone.....I'm not sure if I saw it when it first aired, but I enjoyed it this week as the 50th anniversary arrives.

Jul 14, 2019

Montgomery's Octavia Spencer

From The NY Times review of "Ma":

"Messy, sexual, traumatized, abusive black women like the one Spencer plays are not easily digested. A friend recently told me that her girlfriend’s family was so disturbed by the film that they refused to discuss it after, or relay any details whatsoever."

(The film)... "doesn’t know what it wants to be: A study of PTSD, a “Falling Down” reboot, pure camp or torture porn? It manages to be a little of all, none very successfully."

I have not seen it yet, but will eventually.

Memo to POTUS

“So interesting to see 'Progressive' Democrat Congresswomen, who originally came from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe, the worst, most corrupt and inept anywhere in the world (if they even have a functioning government at all), now loudly and viciously telling the people of the United States, the greatest and most powerful Nation on earth, how our government is to be run,” the president wrote on Twitter.

     I do believe that is their job as members of Congress, no?

From a Newspaper Column by A Vietnam Veteran, 50 years after the first U.S. deaths

"I had demonstrated against the war from the safety of my college deferment, so I thought of going to Canada. I also thought of getting a friendly doctor to say I had bone spurs or anxiety, but those choices would mean someone else from my refinery-town high school would have to go in my place."

So he went, just as Nixon was drawing down the number of troops being deployed. 

A good read HERE

 (At right, a soldier on a C130 plane leaving Vietnam, heading home alive in 1970. Photo by Tim Lennox)

Media: CBS Tries Again

     The CBS Eye will be wide open Monday night as Nora O'Donnell takes over anchoring the network's Prime-Time newscast.
     I have never worked at the national network level in TV, but I do know a bit about the business. Jeff Glor should never have been in the anchor desk. Scott Pelley was perfect, but failed to attract ratings. He certainly landed on his  feet---at 60 Minutes!
     In came new CBS News Division head Susan Zirinsky, the first woman to fill that position, and in came O'Donnell, not the first woman on the anchor desk, but the first in the aftermath of the Charlie Rose and Leslie Moonves' "MeToo" dismissals.
     The Washintgon Post quoted former CBS Face The Nation Host Bob Schieffer, She is...

 “simply the perfect person for this.” But he added with a touch of cautious realism, “We’ll see — we have a tall hill to climb.”     

Photo by Bob Corley

     The only commercial TV stations I have worked for have been CBS Affiliates (WIAT-TV in Birmingham and WAKA-TV in Montgomery), and 60 Minutes has always among my favorite news programs.
      I have high hopes for O'Donnell's success! Watch her in Montgomery at 5:30 Monday on CBS 8. 

Jul 13, 2019

The $2-Million Bird

An article in The Marine Times about the F-35 jet fighters caught my eye with the headline: a single bird-strike brought down one of the $2-Million planes. 

Air Force amn/nco/snco

The Alabama Air National Guard in Montgomery is going to become home to a squadron of the jets.  They are expected to arrive by 2023.

FAA records indicate there are few bird airstrikes in the Montgomery area: There were three reports in 2018.


Praise for Delta Sigma Theta Sorority

 Image result for delta sigma theta sorority logo

They selected New Orleans for their 54th National Convention-----when the Tropical Storm came calling and caused them to end the four day event on Friday---two days early.

They donated the remaining 17-thousand convention meals to second Harvest Food Bank, just when that agency will likely be called on for extra service.

Yes, the meals were probably already paid for, but the sorority performed a true service with their donation.

I ready about the donation in an article in Forbes by a meteorologist whose wife is a member. A good read.

2nd Chances

Nigel Shelby's death was mocked by deputy
    WHNT TV reports developments in the story of the North Alabama Sheriff's deputy fired for mocking the suicide of a bullied gay teenager, and then defending his comments as freedom of speech.

"Liberty, Guns, Bible, Trump, BBQ—That's my kind of LGBTQ movement...I'm seriously offended there is such a thing such as the movement. Society cannot and should not accept this behavior,"

      Jeff Graves resigned from the Madison County Sheriff's Office several days later.

      Now Graves has been hired as an officer with the nearby Owens Crossroads police department.

"Everybody deserves a second chance," Owens Cross Roads Police Chief Jason Dobbins told WHNT, adding that, "Justice is blind."

     Gaves will be on the job starting Monday.

Auto Exhaust

List #1 ---States that have signed a letter to the White House. They have formed the United States Climate Alliance and say they represent "52 percent of the U.S. population and 57percent of the economy". They write they will...

"...stand together in calling for one strong, national clean car standard and support preserving state authority to protect our residents from vehicle pollution.  Strong vehicle standards protect our communities from unnecessary air pollution and fuel costs, and they address the largest source of carbon pollution in the United States." 

California | Colorado | Connecticut | Delaware | Hawaii | Illinois | Maine | Maryland | Massachusetts | Minnesota | Montana | Nevada | New Jersey | New Mexico | New York | North Carolina | Oregon | Pennsylvania | Puerto Rico | Rhode Island | Vermont | Virginia | Washington | Wisconsin

List #2 --- The largest car producing states in the U.S.

 Michigan/ Ohio / Indiana / Texas / Illinois / Tennessee / Missouri / Kentucky / Alabama / Mississippi.

Only one state is on both lists...Illinois.

The bottom list includes many, like Alabama, who are so called "right to work" (i.e. anti-union) states that normally argue for state's rights.
     But in this case, they perhaps want Big Federal Government to preserve their profits.

Freds Closing More Stores

The stores closing in Alabama:

Alexandria: 120 Spring Branch Dr
Bayou La Batre: 13210 North Wintzell Ave
Butler: 307 North Mulberry Ave
Clanton: 300 Park Dr
Daleville: 340 Virginia Ave
Elba: 996 Highway 203
Guin: 7250 Us-43
Haleyville: 916 21st St.
Jasper: 280 Highway 78 W.
Red Bay: 525 4th Ave. NE
Rogersville: 16100 Hwy 72
Vernon: 9574 Hwy-18

The chain will have about 80 stores remaining after the latest round of closings.

Jul 12, 2019

Far From The Storm....

...but some nice sunset photos as a result:

 That's the CBS 8 TV Antenna photobombing my shot....

Apollo 11/Alabama

Media: OMG! She did what????

Headline in USA Today this afternoon:

Oprah Winfrey praised for opening her private road during Maui fire to help evacuations

Jul 11, 2019


   FCC votes 3-2 along party-lines to allow broadcasters to air kids programs earlier than decades-long regulations required, i.e., to allow broadcasters to bury another hour of it at 6:00 AM.

From "Deadline" website:

"FCC commissioner Michael O’Rielly, said the limitations were burdensome and out of step with the media landscape of 2019. Today, they argue, broadcasters now compete with YouTube, Netflix and a host of other outlets for kids fare that were not in play when the rules were drafted.
“Our family consumes a fair share of children-centric programming – whether its Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood, Peppa Pig or Thomas the Tank Engine,” O’Rielly wrote in a blog post in 2018, noting he is the father of a toddler. “But none of these shows are aired on commercial broadcast stations. In fact, I can’t think of the last time, if ever, we turned to a local broadcast television station for children’s programming.


 I'm guessing he would also vote to eliminate all of PBS, since they carry the bulk of all of kid's TV shows.
  Why not just eliminate all programming requirements to keep big bad government entirely out of the TV business? In fact, why just not vote yourself out of a job and abolish the agency other than for technical regulation?

Photo Exhibit Reception is today in Montgomery

     The photos in this exhibition were chosen by a jury from entries from across the country, plus one from each of the "gang of nine" Montgomery photographers (myself included) who get together monthly or so to talk. Our photos are not eligible for the awards, of course.


HERE is the Stonehenge Galley page for the competition and the exhibition.

HERE are my own photo pages

HERE is my Instagram page.

Montgomery: Eviction Capital of Alabama

    Almost six times every day, Montgomery County Alabama Sheriff's Deputies throw Montgomery residents out of their homes.    
     It's their job to carry out court-ordered evictions, forcing people who have refused to follow court orders to leave. 
     Deputies may also move the belongings people have left inside the house or apartment at the curb.

     Montgomery has the highest eviction rate in Alabama.

     The Eviction Lab website ranks Montgomery 27th in U.S. on their list of the top evicting cities in America. The lab reports there were 2,074 evictions in the city in 2016. 


     And people who have been evicted face other problems too, writes the Eviction Lab:

"Eviction causes a family to lose their home. They often are also expelled from their community and their children have to switch schools. Families regularly lose their possessions, too, which are piled on the sidewalk or placed in storage, only to be reclaimed after paying a fee. A legal eviction comes with a court record, which can prevent families from relocating to decent housing in a safe neighborhood, because many landlords screen for recent evictions. Studies also show that eviction causes job loss, as the stressful and drawn-out process of being forcibly expelled from a home causes people to make mistakes at work and lose their job. Eviction also has been shown to affect people's mental health: one study found that mothers who experienced eviction reported higher rates of depression two years after their move. The evidence strongly indicates that eviction is not just a condition of poverty, it is a cause of it."

You can download the Alabama Tenants Handbook HERE at the Alabama Arise website.


Jul 10, 2019

Buzzing the kids away

 A high-tech effort is underway to stop kids from hanging out after hours in parks etc, without imposing a curfew. It's a device that creates a high pitched sound that older people can't hear at all...but teens can.
 From NPR:
"Parks & Recreation (in Philadelphia is defending) its use of the Mosquito, saying the devices are operational from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. only, and they're just one part of an overall anti-vandalism strategy that includes fences and gates, security cameras and night watch staff."
                                                                                           Full Story with audio clip HERE.

NO plan I know of to install Mosquito Devices in Montgomery.